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Aberrant: Theomachy - Theomachy

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Jackson Creed, could you make a new sub-forum in the Active Games category called Theomachy? Thank you :D

So here is my game proposal for a new pbp game.

Theomachy

Introduction

Theomachy is a mythological game using the Aberrant system. In this game you play mythological beings (novas) who live among mortals (baselines) in an original fantasy-like setting. Many major details of the setting are established by the Storyteller before play begins, but most of the smaller details of the setting are purposefully left undefined so that the Storyteller and players can create them during play to suit the story's needs. The details of a character's life and background are also left vague during character creation and then more solidly defined later as you (the player) become more comfortable with the setting and what you want out of your character. The less you define about yourself in the beginning, the more you can define later.

The name "Theomachy" is a reference to Greek mythology. A theomachy is a war between gods. The overall plot of the game will focus around different groups of novas (pantheons) that come into conflict with each other. Your characters will start out as members of one or more pantheons that rule over geographic regions. Rising in the ranks of a pantheon means wielding more political power. Politics can play a large role in the game's flow. The Background system is completely redone to reflect the importance of this, though if a player wants less politics and more of a focus on other things this is acceptable.

The kind of character you play in Theomachy is up to you as long as it fits within the mythological/fantasy theme. It is impossible for novas to not affect the world around them. All have personal goals they want to see fulfilled as well as the power and ambition to fulfill them and your character is no different. Your character can become the general of an army, a great inventor, the leader of a country, the icon of a massive cult, a legendary wandering warrior...anything. And he or she can be as virtuous or depraved as you want them to be; you are not limited to playing the archetypal "good guy." Your character's family can also be a major aspect to create and develop in-game, as every good myth has family drama involved. You are also not limited by the confined setting of a realistic modern-day Earth like with Aberrant, but of a fantasy-like world where you are allowed to create lasting changes upon the world around you. Your actions can have real, permanent effects. Your character can be and do almost anything you want them to be as long as they fit within the mythological theme of the game and aren't disruptive to other players. Just remember that even though you have godlike powers you are not truly a god. Also remember that there are other novas in the setting more powerful than you.

Theomachy uses an altered version of the Aberrant system. Most of these changes are made to the character creation process, Backgrounds, and (lack of) Experience Points. The details of these changes are explained later but are always subject to change depending on the needs of the game (and whether or not they become a problem!). The biggest change is the lack of Experience Points. As for changes to nova character sheets themselves, novas share a name with Aberrant's novas for the sake of simplicity but are different in several gameplay aspects. They do not all share an identical origin story like Aberrant's novas (the Galatea explosion), instead letting you create your own origin story and family history/tree. Several other nova-wide aspects have been altered, a main point being that thanks to the existence of an Underworld the novas of Theomachy are technically immortal. Again, these are explained later.

History of the World

Gaia was once a lifeless rock. Then the First Gods, whose names and traits are still a mystery to this day, arrived and attempted to bring life to it. They created the four elemental moons to help supply themselves with the materials necessary to bring life to Gaia; they created the Upper Realms to serve as their temporary homes while they planned; they created the Underworld to capture the souls of those creatures that died so their spirits would not bother the living. And when Gaia was complete they added baselines so that societies could develop and prosper. But the Gods watched in disappointment as their own baseline creations killed, conquered, and enslaved one another. They were incapable of descending to the world below and educating the baseline masses since their own minds were too complex to understand.

So the Gods decided to retreat within the Upper Realms and in time they grew lonely. They had grown tired of each other and desired the company of others. Taking a few of the baselines from the world below and infusing them with quantum energy they created novas. These Second Gods were not true gods but were clearly more than baseline and kept the true Gods company for many years. Things were good at first but the novas eventually fell to the same vices as baselines. Fearing they had erred greatly with Gaia, the true Gods left one by one until none of them remained. And as they left they cast all of the novas out of the Upper Realms and down to the world below to live among the baselines.

As the last of the First Gods was leaving she looked back upon Gaia and gave the novas a final message: to guide the baselines as a shepherd would a flock, to care for them as a parent would a child, to teach them as a teacher would a pupil, and to inspire them as the First Gods had inspired novas.

Or so the myth goes.

It has been roughly five-hundred years since novas first descended to Gaia from the heavens. Upon arrival they quickly set up societies and started educating baselines as the gods had requested. There was a period of peace for about one-hundred years where all novas cooperated but then conflicts appeared and wars were declared. The novas split themselves into smaller like-minded groups called pantheons that ruled over the various regions of Gaia. These divisions exist to this day, though the borders are constantly changing due to war.

Conflict is so constant that none of the original novas are alive, their spirits having retreated into the deepest recesses of the Underworld forever. Their roughly one-thousand offspring now carry on their work and shape the world as they desire.

I don't want to post much more until we have a subforum. So who is interested?

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Sha-wing!

Sounds awesome...my idea might change when I know more about the setting and chargen but for now I am thinking of a demigod combining aspects of Zeus and Hephaestus or their equivalents, coming from a heavily GrecoRoman area and taking on the role of a wandering warrior who is more or less uninterested in the wars and politics until/unless he is given a good reason or it becomes personal...

might I also suggest a limit, at least initially, of Q5? All of the Q6 games that started quickly collapse under their own weight...better and more fun to earn it the hard way and also good since you are changing the xp system...

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Yeah it'll be a Q5-max start, but you'll also start with Q2. And 60 NP. I should have pointed that out! But I'll get to the chargen when we have a forum.

Its good that you chose Zeus and Hephaestus because one of the parts of chargen is picking two (or one) characters from real-world mythologies and using them as Inspiration for your character.

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And while you're at it can you set starting WP at 5 like all the other WW games? 3 always seemed so low in Aberrant.

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I'll tentatively sign up for this as well, if that's alright. I don't have a home PC right now, and my time for posting from work is limited (which is why I've largely withdrawn from being active on RPG-Post during the last two months or so), but I might be able to swing one game, and it'd be worth it if it helps keep this site active (this is where I got my PbP start, after all).

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Hey Cottus! I would love to see you join, if for nothing else to see what madness you could come upn with. I do however want to voice a concern that if we are going to do this we do it right and that everyone can post at least twice a week to keep things moving.

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I'm always down for Steampunk!

Rome and Greece used Steampower and we are finding that they were even more advanced in some areas than we thought.

Plus Nova inventors will change the landscape given time.

Also consider that since this is an entire world we are taking about, different cultures might have different tech levels. IE the Asian-esque part of the world might have gunpowder while the Roman-esque has advanced metallurgy and the Nordic-esque is more bronze age with simple watermills and such...

I am sure looking forward to more info from BT! I asked him to PM JC since our worthy admin probably doesn't check in every day. Don;t know if he got that though...I will PM JC myself to keep this ball rolling.

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Hey Cottus whats up man!

The tech level should be discussed in the setting info, but as Sky indicated having Nova super geniuses may alter the face of the planet with tech and invention. I see no reason however, that regardless of posted tech level that we, with our Demi-Godness can't have more. :-D

Maybe it will be an Archaic looking device but same effects.

And for the record it was nice to log-in and see not only familiar faces "Active" but faces Active none the less.

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I PMed JC. Should be up eventually.

As for tech levels...

The short history of the world I have created means that novas have been around for no more than five-hundred years. They've certainly done a lot in that time but nothing as extreme as the inventions of the Aberrant world. When novas first arrived baseline societies were very primitive, below even the Bronze Age. Most of the inventions by novas have been what we would consider basic by our standards...stuff in the realm of architectural techniques, basic medicines, blacksmithing, philosophy, cleanliness, etc. Novas aren't doing things like curing cancer and inventing the OpNet left and right in Theomachy, they're developing sewage systems and composing the first musical masterpieces. When they do develop something amazing like vehicles, explosives, clockwork robots, and gunpowder the baseline masses just don't understand them and they become rare inventions that require novas to maintain and create them. And inventions never really spread beyond the domains of the novas that make them. So one domain's capital city might have an amazing system of underground railways and zeppelin ferries because of one or two novas that make them, while a neighboring domain's capital could still be using ox-carts to get around...but might also have a system of aqueducts and a small fleet of steamships equipped with fire-belching cannons.

Its all about scale. In the Aberrant setting you have novas like Rachel Alinksy creating nanotech weapons and hover vehicles. In Theomachy she would be creating a small army of steam-powered catapults to crush a nearby city into submission.

Inventing is something I'm a bit worried about, but I def want to include it! The urge to create things like zeppelins and such is too awesome to ignore. But I don't want to establish too many rules, like with the Gadgets system in Aberrant. I want it to be more freeform and we'll probably make it up as we go. I was thinking a system where you spend a whole lot of RR time developing a device or whatever (making rolls, researching, etc.). Then after you have the plans you can start making that device but making it costs time and money and the first ones you create will be experimental and weak. After developing the device/whatever you can further change and enhance it, but you're the only one with the knowledge of how. If anyone else wants to make a copy they'll need to make their own from the ground up (maybe reverse engineer) or learn from you if they are smart enough. Each device would be assigned a number of successes that MUST be achieved within a certain number of rolls in order to be created. if you don't succeed enough by 3 or so rolls, the creation is a failure.

Sounds simple, right? I do want to restrict Quantum-powered devices though. Those should be exceedingly rare in this game. They exist, but they aren't invented...they are found or inherited.

Technology will never outweigh nova power and there are also going to be a lot of things out there like floating cities, mythic weapons, magic devices, elemental monsters, etc. that were never invented by anyone. Flying carpets aren't a technology, and neither are reanimated corpses housing the souls of dead people. Those kinds of things are beyond the realm of invention. In this setting the word Quantum is synonymous with Magic or Holy Energy, so things that are quantum powered (including you) aren't evolutionary advancements but magical and divine. When you encounter a quantum-powered device, it is not powered by actual quantum forces via technology, but by actual magic. The word Quantum is used just so we don't get confused.

As for cultures...

A Domain is the collection of regions that a single Pantheon has rule over...the equivalent of a nation. But I don't want each domain/region to be a carbon copy of a real-world culture. Obviously we'll all be using Greek and other real-world myths for inspiration but that doesn't mean we can't combine them together. So just because a city is mostly Roman in nature (with praetorians, a Senate, a slave caste, etc.) doesn't mean it can't also have ninjas, dwarven blacksmiths, Indian weaponry, women dressed in hijab, and hellhound guard dogs. We'll make stuff up as we go.

Looking forward to starting this thing ^^

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I like it! It's almost like we are combining some Adventure into this...in fact what do you think about using the Dramatic Editing rules or a modification thereof to help us influence the setting on the fly?

We should also have a cyclopedia or Grimoire to keep track of such things, setting, cultures, tech, mosters encountered, deities, devices and so on and so forth...

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More thoughts/questions:

Will the background include the Epic 6 dot backgrounds from Adventure? ie you are the General of the Army, or have a super awesome sanctum (flying castle!) or a magic artifact etc..?

Corolary: at what level of power and influence should we start...ie would your prefer we play our way to being heads of state or is it possible to start as such?

Alsom how broad can we be in our irigin? Do we have to be descendants of the gods? Or could say, Cottus bring his Dragon character into this game? Or a vampire (or other "monster" type) as Shade mentioned to me the other day, or perhaps a wizard or necromancer or such who "learned" their powers through study rather than divine birth?

I ask because I also have an Achilles type of concept I am tinkering with...

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I have a few concepts that are certainly "dvine" at least in execution. I like this setting and the up in the air feeling (no pun intended) because it gives us the ability to take real history, tweak it how we see and call it canon.

I'm very excited BT. Seems like Sky is too based on his 32 posts in sequence. Just like the good ole' days.

::ultracool

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On Backgrounds:

All backgrounds have been redone. In fact only the Resources and Sanctum backgrounds remain. Here is my current list:

Armor - A unique mythical armor of some kind

Beast - A mythic creature companion

Champions - Divinely-infused baseline warriors that are bound to your service

Fame - How famous and respected you are

Pantheon - Your ranking within your Pantheon

Resources - Your spendable resources

Sanctum - Your home

Servants - How many baseline Extras you have directly at your call

Weapon - A unique mythical weapon of some kind

Worshipers - How many worshipers (and how much power) your cult has

All go up to 10 dots except Weapon and Armor, which go to 5. There are also multiple Background enhancements for most Backgrounds (like Mega-Attribute enhancements) that make them more powerful and give you more options. For example, here are some Beast enhancements:

Ferocious Beast (requirements: none)

Your Beast excels at physical combat. It gains a natural soak bonus of +8 to both Bashing and Lethal, +2 against Aggravated, +6 to Initiative, and deals +1 die of damage with all physical attacks. It can now raise Physical Mega-Attributes to 4 dots.

Determined Beast (requirements: Willpower 6)

You Beast never gives up and never gives in. Your Beast gains both the Iron Will and High Pain Tolerance merits. When it "dies" it may spend 3 quantum as a free action to bring itself to Incapacitated. It will still be unconscious and appear dead. If the death of the Beast is extreme (decapitation, cut in half, disintegrated, etc.) then this effect will not work.

Quantum Beast (requirements: Beast's Quantum 3)

Your Beast's connection with quantum energy is so great that it can manifest more powerful abilities. It gains Quantum 4 and a single dot in a level 3 power that requires no greater than Quantum 4. This power cannot be raised beyond a single dot. It's quantum pool is doubled.

Morphic Beast (requirements: Quantum 5+, Beast 4+)

Your Beast changes form and even quantum powers, either by it's own will or by your hand. Set aside three dots worth of bonuses from this Background. In between Chapters you may "reconstruct" what those three dots give in bonuses to your Beast. The Beast is still the same being and hasn't died or been replaced but instead drastically alters its form, perhaps because it is morphable in nature or some kind of construct. Despite changes to it's form your companion still retains certain physical or behavioral characteristics. It is not a new creature...that would require taking the Beast background again.

There are all kinds of enhancements for stuff: spreading your Worshipers to another domain, making your Weapon intelligent, and so on. I originally had a background that would be similar to Devices and would cover anything that wasn't a weapon or armor but decided they should be handed out at my whim and not tied to any trait. How do you rank an orb that lets you control weather, or a potion that turns people into animals? That kind of stuff will just be introduced as we go, no Background.

On power levels and authority:

Everyone will be required to start in a pantheon, even if only at one dot. One dot in Pantheon means that you live in the pantheon's domain and they acknowledge you as a citizen but you have no authority. 10 dots makes you a leader of the entire Pantheon. 2 dots is where you start to get power. Its better for your characters to start out low- to mid-rank since you'll be growing into power eventually and its only a matter of time before the leaders in your Pantheon start dying off and needing replacing.

I was thinking that if everyone wants they would all start in the same Pantheon/domain. This Pantheon would only have about 30 novas, which would make it small compared to its neighbors. You wouldn't start out as the leaders of the group, but low- or mid-level. Your novas could be kind of like "lords" over small regions of the domain which you call home, or just live at the capital.

On origins:

All novas have two nova parents; its the only way to create more novas. That doesn't mean your origin story begins and ends with "emerged from vagina." Part of the character creation process is coming up with some kind of origin story involving your nova in their youth. It doesn't need to make sense, or even be true. Your cult will believe whatever you say about your birth. Aphrodite was said to be born of the sea foam created when Oranus' genitals were chopped off and tossed into the sea. I have a feeling a very bitter woman invented that story...

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::jaw Wow BT! You have once again outdone yourself! I can;t wait to read your material in it's entirety...seems like it deserves it's own ebook or supplement!

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I originally had Allies and Contacts, but thought they would be best roleplayed. Same with Mentor. Attunement and Node are gone because they are an automatic part of Quantum (Quantum dots = Node and Attunement dots). Cipher is better as a Merit imo.

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Uh-oh! You got some competition there Shade!

BTW, BT...you need a new styled-out Avvie, as chic as your broken link looks... ::tongue

I am, as usual, torn between two equally awesome ideas. One is an elemental of sorts inspired by Zeus and Hephaestus and the other is a war-god type inspired by Achilles and Kratos, with a dash of Prince of Persia...

Choices... *sigh*

Also just thinking 4 is a good number, managebale. More would be better of course, creating more intrigue and dynamism.

I am also keen on a coastal setting if only because I have Greek Mythology on the Brain (Like Water on the Knee apparently...)

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To help everyone tinker with character ideas, here are my (subject to change) chargen rules.

Using the chart on Aberrant page 120, these are the changes:

"Baseline Phase"

Inspiration

This replaces the "Concept" entry and is unique to Theomachy. Before you can create your new character you first choose one or two mythological characters from our own real-world myths to base your nova on. You aren't making a copy of those characters by any means; as the name implies they are only your inspiration for creating the nova. The inspiration you take from these characters can be as little or great as you want...the nova you make does not have to resemble them in body or personality, just in spirit. You can choose characters from popular myths like the Greek, Roman, Norse, Egyptian, Chinese, and Indian stories or even go for obscure to lesser-known myths. Your nova could be inspired by Mercury the speedster or Set the crocodile-god, but nothing is stopping you from getting inspiration from Paul Bunyan or the Laughing Buddha.

Name

You cannot name yourself after a real-world myth character, but just calling your nova Dave isn't acceptable either. Since inventing names can be hard, try this: take the name of your Inspiration. Then jumble the letters around. If you have two Inspirations, then combine parts of their names together to create one name. There you go, your nova's name! Aside from his or her given name novas also tend to rack up aliases over time. You can give yourself one alias at gamestart if you wish (Hammer of War, Messenger of the Pantheon, The Watcher, Bane of the Living, etc.).

Two Natures

When creating a character you choose two Natures instead of one. This doubles the opportunity to regain Willpower from Nature, and lets you define your character's personality a little more. You can also use Natures from the Trinity Players Guide (Competitor, Confidant, Cynic, Fanatic, Innocent, Monster, Perfectionist) and Adventure (Expert, Charmer). There are also four new Natures I created specifically for Aberrant which can also be used in this game: Deviant, Elemental, Loner, and Nova.

Ability Cap

Novas may raise Abilities to five dots during the "baseline" phase instead of the normal cap of three.

(Note: some Abilities are gone)

Free Specialties

Novas start with two free Specialties at character creation, but baselines do not. This partly compensates for the novas' lack of Bonus Points.

Starting Backgrounds

Novas start with 10 free dots in Backgrounds since there are now more choices and they play a more prominent role in the game. Note that you get less Background dots per NP later on, so spend your free dots wisely. You also get one free Background enhancement but if you don't want to use it you can trade it in for 3 more Background dots (bringing you to 13). You can save your free Background enhancement until the "nova" phase if you want in order to meet specific requirements. Baselines start with 3 Background dots.

Starting Quantum

All novas start with Quantum 2. Quantum still cannot be raised above 5 at character creation. Since novas do not get Bonus Points, Quantum must be raised with NP later.

Starting Taint

Default starting Taint is 1 for all novas and it cannot be reduced to 0. Novas can only start with a higher Taint if they take points of it for additional NP.

Starting Willpower

Novas start with Willpower 5. Baselines start with Willpower 3.

Changes to Bonus Points

Only baselines get 15 Bonus Points to spend. Novas get three "imaginary" Bonus Points that are only good for buying Merits and Flaws and nothing else.

Merits and Flaws Restrictions

You cannot take any of the Merits that mimic Mega-Intelligence enhancements. Eufiber Attuned and Eufiber Rejection cannot be taken since there is no Eufiber in this setting. Dependence to things baselines cannot be dependant to is an Aberration. Enemy cannot be taken. Physical aberrations cannot be purchased as Flaws...but mental and social Aberrations are perfect as Flaws.

You can use various Merits and Flaws from the Trinity Players Guide and other White Wolf lines as long as they pass Storyteller approval.

"Nova Phase"

Endurance and Resilience

Novas no longer start with three automatic dots in Endurance and Resilience. They are just as likely to starve, get sick, or become an addict as any baseline (except when certain powers or enhancements apply).

Changes to Nova Points

Novas start with 60 nova points (NP) instead of 30. Any unspent points are wasted as usual. The NP costs for traits have been altered; use the list below to replace the one in the book:

Quantum - 4

Level 1 Power - 1/2* (One point for two dots, can be split among two powers)

Level 2 Power - 2

Level 3 Power - 4

Body Mod - 1**

Quantum Pool dot - 1/2* (One point for 2 dots)

Mega-Attribute - 1 (for first dot only), 3 (for second and later dots)

Mega-Attribute Enhancement - 3

2 Attribute dots - 1

5 Ability dots - 1

Ability Mastery - 1

Willpower - 1

3 Background dots - 1

Background Enhancement - 3

Taint +3

Low-level Aberration +1

Mid-level Aberration +2

High-level Aberration +3

* You can split 1 NP between a Level 1 power and a Quantum Pool dot.

** All Body Mods now cost 1 NP

As you can see costs have been altered to reflect the new setting. It is easier to have quantum powers at higher levels from their reduced costs, but harder to get things like Attributes and Abilities at higher dots. See the Backgrounds thread for information on Background enhancements.

Changes to Taint

Nothing can be purchased as Tainted. Instead you can voluntarily take a permanent point of Taint in order to gain 3 extra NP during character creation. You are limited to taking 3 points of Taint (9 NP) this way.

Changes to Aberrations

You may also voluntarily take Aberrations for additional NP. Aberrations work differently than in Aberrant; each Aberration has its own personal ranking of low-, mid-, or high-level that is not affected by a nova's Taint. The level of the Aberration determines its severity. This is discussed below. You are limited to gaining 6 total NP from starting Aberrations and they must be approved by the ST. You can take additional Aberrations at gamestart if you want but will not get more than 6 NP.

(Note: If you take 9 NP from taint and 6 NP from aberrations, you get a total of 75 NP)

Changes to Strengths and Weaknesses

The Strengths and Weaknesses system is seen as a roleplaying tool in this game so is not available during character generation. You can voluntarily apply Weaknesses to your powers if you want but there will be no trade-off. Any Strengths will develop during play. Since S/W are now a roleplaying tool, it may be possible to have a power with Strengths and no Weaknesses after play starts.

Ability Mastery

Ability Mastery is a new option for novas during character creation (and during play) to reflect a nova that has absolutely mastered a certain Ability. If a nova has Ability Mastery he is considered to have every possible Specialty for that Ability, effectively giving him an extra die to roll with. He can also never botch a roll with that Ability (botches become standard fails). In order to take Ability Mastery a nova must have 5 dots in the relevant Ability. Remove all Specialties from that Ability and replace with the word "Mastery."

That's character gen, I also have more on the changes to aberrations, quantum, taint, etc. that I'll post a bit later just so you know how that works.

If you guys notice any glaring mistakes then please point them out ^^

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And then there was more information!

Quantum

Both the Attunement and Node Backgrounds have been erased and are instead incorporated directly into Quantum. So with a Quantum of 5 you are considered to also have an Attunement and Node of 5. Quantum also no longer causes you to accumulate Taint at 5+ (and by extension neither does Node at 3+). Attunement works as normal. Node no longer allows quantum detection but otherwise works as normal.

Quantum also adds to natural soak. Each dot of Quantum adds +1 to Bashing, Lethal, and Aggravated soak which cannot be reduced by Armor Piercing or similar efforts. This makes up for the loss of Eufiber but also gives novas a better natural defense against Aggravated assaults. This soak does not work against mental attacks.

Quantum (instead of Taint) now gives you Aberrations. At Quantum 6 and every point thereafter you gain a new Aberration at low-level. Any Aberrations gained from Quantum are generally harder to change or get rid of and have a tendency to reach high-level more quickly, representing a nova's transcendence and evolving power. Players get to choose Aberrations gained from Quantum.

Taint

Temporary Taint is accumulated as normal but can also be handed out at the Storyteller's whim when he feels it is dramatically appropriate based on events of the game. The same applies to Permanent Taint; due to events in the game you may be given a point (or more!) of Permanent Taint. Temporary Taint bleeds off naturally at 1 point per chapter. There are no other game mechanics for taking away either form of Taint but there will be ways to "roleplay" the Taint away.

Novas gain a -1 penalty to Social rolls and interactions with baselines at Taint 7 and for every point thereafter. So a nova has nothing to worry about at Taint 6, but things quickly go downhill after that. A nova is still removed from play at Taint 10 as their minds become so alien and bizarre that roleplaying them is impossible.

Aberrations

Aberrations are no longer linked with Taint; they are an independent trait, though they can be gained through high Quantum. They can be gained and lost (and mutated) in-game through events of the story. Aberrations are still considered to be a hindrance but they are mostly a roleplaying tool now. It is possible to have a character that is riddled with Aberrations yet has a Taint of 1, or who has a Taint of 9 and no Aberrations.

Aberration levels are changeable. Virtually any Aberration can be taken at low-, mid-, or high-level and every Aberration must have its level defined when it is taken. Even normally high-level Aberrations like Sloughed Flesh and Radioactive can be taken as low-level. Several Aberrations that all express one thing should be listed as one Aberration. If your character looks like a minotaur just take one Aberration (Minotaur Body) instead of several different ones. Remember that separate Aberrations can mutate into other things on their own.

Aberrations also mutate independently per character now; there is no guideline for what any Aberration should be like at high-level. At low-level an Aberration is hardly a nuisance but when going to medium- and high-level it can become a problem. Two characters with Glow at high-level may have entirely different effects; one could be so bright that others have to cover their eyes, the other could cause damage with his touch. Aberrations are handled on a case-by-case basis.

Chrysalis

Chrysalis is the name of the process by which a nova raises his Quantum above 5. Upon some kind of powerful and dramatic personal event, a nova with Quantum 5 will literally disappear from the physical world. Several days later he will rematerialize somewhere with +1 Quantum (and the automatic low-level Aberration that comes with it). At some point during play after undergoing the Chrysalis the nova will manifest the Power Mastery Extra (APG, page 119) for a single power they have, as determined by both the Storyteller and the player. This is the only way to apply Mastery to a quantum power, which limits you to one Mastery per Quantum point over 5. Only level 1-3 powers can have Mastery applied to them.

No other changes are made to the character's stats from Chrysalis. This process is repeated every time Quantum is raised another dot above 5. This is not the Teragen's Chrysalis so there are no Archetypes or rolls involved. It is the only way to raise Quantum to 6 and beyond.

Changes to Novas

Certain other general changes have been made to novas. The following aspects apply to all novas in Theomachy:

Ageless

All novas are considered ageless as far as the campaign is concerned. Novas age as normal baselines do up until puberty is finished when their nova abilities fully manifest, at which point their aging dramatically slows. Whether or not novas are actually able to live forever is unknown, since the oldest known novas are only about three to four centuries old.

Immune System

Novas are no longer immune to poisons, drugs, diseases, etc. like they are in Aberrant. They do not gain three automatic dots in Endurance and Resistance and are affected normally by things such as alcohol and drugs. They generally eat and drink as much as baselines do.

Offspring

The offspring of two novas are always novas. There are no restrictions to a nova's powers or quantum make-up based on who their parents are. Just because a mother and father can manipulate cold and ice doesn't mean their children will, though there is a strong possibility that a few traits are passed on. There can be certain lineages and families where certain traits are almost always present in offspring, but you are free to be whatever you want.

Nova fertility is tricky. Since novas are ageless they have a greatly reduced fertility rate. But novas also tend to give birth to twins, triplets, etc. at much higher rates than baselines.

Novas can produce offspring with baselines. These children will never be novas but they will be born stronger than a normal baseline, gaining an extra +1 to Willpower, three extra Attribute dots, and double Bonus Points at character creation. They may also be born with one of their nova parent's Aberrations at low-level.

Novas can mate with mythological creatures and animals while Shapeshifted and such, but we can handle that situation if it presents itself.

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Huh. . . while I would not normally be interested in a forum-based game, I have the inklings of a character concept in mind. Vaguely inspired by Tyr, except Fenris was not a a force of cosmic destruction, but a rival/enemy of his tribe who he turned into an ally through unflinching courage and justness. Leading to a group of tribes growing into a kingdom, forged around the idea of forthrightness in all dealings.

And then something happened to destroy much or all of it, leading to him going on a bit of a wandering quest of justice and revenge. . .

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Huh. . . while I would not normally be interested in a forum-based game, I have the inklings of a character concept in mind. Vaguely inspired by Tyr, except Fenris was not a a force of cosmic destruction, but a rival/enemy of his tribe who he turned into an ally through unflinching courage and justness. Leading to a group of tribes growing into a kingdom, forged around the idea of forthrightness in all dealings.

And then something happened to destroy much or all of it, leading to him going on a bit of a wandering quest of justice and revenge. . .

And then they were 5...

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And another post.

I'm not sure how you guys will feel about Mega-Strength. I just remember a lot of people complaining about how it should work like all the other Megas and I kind of agreed with them. Or is my approach broken?

Abilities

The Military Science Ability from the Trinity Players Guide is available. The following Abilities are of no use to the campaign:

Brawl (covered by Martial Arts)

Drive (covered by Pilot)

Computer (covered by Engineering, hypothetically)

Gunnery (covered by Heavy Weapons)

Weave (useless)

Thought Discipline (does not fit campaign)

New Abilities can be introduced at player request. I'm still mulling over separating Arts and Engineering up into their own Abilities (Arts into Music, Singing, Writing, etc; Engineering into Blacksmithing, Architecture, etc.). We shall see.

A few more notes:

- Artillery is used for siege craft such as catapults.

- Guns are rare and not powerful yet, so the Firearms Ability is rare. Crossbows fall into this category though, so some people do have it.

Fighting styles for Martial Arts, Brawl, Melee, etc. can't be taken as Specialties since I feel they alter combat too drastically for Specialties. I might allow them later (as merits), but at gamestart they won't be an option.

Mega-Attributes

The following are changes to Mega-Attributes and their enhancements.

Mega-Strength

Mega-Strength now works as any other Mega-Attribute would, adding Mega-dice to all Strength Abilities. Automatic dice for Might are gone, but base lifting ability remains. Automatic damage has been reduced from 5 levels per dot to 3 levels per dot. This is for three reasons: to increase survivability between novas in fist fights so they aren't dead after 1 round, because punching someone does not cost quantum, and because Mega-Strength + Claws + multiple attacks = f*cking ridonkulous.

Mega-Appearance

You no longer receive extra dice for Style rolls (or Intimidation if you go Mega-Ugly). The innate bonus from having Mega-Appearance should be enough.

Mega-Attribute Enhancements

All of the enhancements from official books are acceptable, using the changes below. If you want to use an enhancement from a fan supplement such as Forceful Personalities or The New Flesh I must approve of it.

Precision - Applies to physical combat damage (including from arrows, bullets, thrown objects, natural weaponry, and even melee Claws) but not damage from powers like Quantum Bolt, Mental Blast, or ranged Claws. On the other hand you can now instinctively feel when you're about to kill someone with Brawl, Martial Arts, Melee and related close-combat abilities and can choose to reduce damage enough to incapacitate and not kill as a free action and for no cost.
Adaptability - Despite the name this power no longer causes you to sprout gills and grow hard skin, as those are covered by Shapeshift, Body Mods, and Aberrations. You instead just don't need to breathe, eat, drink, sleep, etc. as normal for the enhancement. You are no longer instantly immune to most poisons, drugs, etc. You must resist all of those as normal and your bonus is reduced from +6 dice to +3 dice. This enhancement has no bearing on how long you can live since novas in Theomachy are already ageless.
Analytic Taste/Touch - These two must be taken separately.
Hyperenhanced Hearing - No longer has the "transmit radio waves" feature. Not that it would be useful here anyway.
Quantum Attunement - No longer lets you see "blind" since that's covered by Blindfighting. The Medicine roll is replaced by a straight up Perception + Mega-Perception roll.
Eidetic Memory - Has been merged with Enhanced Memory. Just take Enhanced Memory instead, which will now cover both.
Fast Learner - Does not reduce XP costs for Abilities, since this system does not use XP. It now lets you to raise any Intelligence Ability to 6 dots (even during character creation, if you take it then). It continues to reduce learning time. Effects stack with Ability Mastery.
Mental Prodigy: Computers - Useless.
Speed Reading - Useless, even in Aberrant.
Taint Resistance- Useless, since Node does not give Taint anymore.
Artistic Genius - You must define a type of art when purchasing this enhancement and may take it multiple times. Just because you are a good painter doesn't mean you're a good writer or musician.
Human Nature - The cumulative +1 difficulty to the roll only starts applying at Taint 7 and higher. Since the game now uses dual Natures you must use this enhancement twice to discover both, but upon doing so you can receive bonuses to Social rolls at the Storyteller's permission when used against the target.
Quickness - Extra actions from Quickness cannot be split into multiple actions. Each use of Quickness is good for a single physical action such as a combat strike.
Almost Live - Useless, since live recorded media do not exist in this setting.
Awe-Inspiring - No longer affected by Taint or Aberrations as the enhancement describes.

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It's an interesting idea ...

I can't promise (yet) that I'll join, if I can I'll post soon as I know.

If I do play, my character will be loosely based off of Corwin, God of Mecha, from Undocumented Features: Symphony of the Sword. Basically, child of the Norn/Fate of the Future. Engineering/Science masteries, Mega-Int, and a steampunk-ish mecha that is called forth magically from the earth. Somewhat Norse in outlook and personality.

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Nice one BN! Leave it to you to bring in the brain. Cool that someone else is feelin' the steampunk too... :)

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PS...does anyone have JC's actual email addy, and if so could you ping him please? He hasn't responded to any PMs in days and likely isn't checking the site often...

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I suggest killing the "Throwing" skill too. It's a solution in search of a problem since melee, athletics, or might already cover your skill moving around whatever.

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I'm against having too much "mecha" stuff, but you can have a steampunk or clockwork mecha by taking the Beast Background. Then give it the Morphic enhancement so you can tinker with it.

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Sorry for the late reply folks. The forum has been created (right here) and I've moved the thread into it here in Aberrant IC Games. Moderators can mod and change stuff here as with any other thread.

Fantastic idea for a game by the way! ::biggrin

If I can free up a bit of time, I might be tempted to join...

JC

P.S.

My email address is dannybladeuk@yahoo.co.uk in case you need to get hold of me in a hurry... I just wasn't expecting so much activity so quickly! Yay!

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Hey BT, I wanted to say, firstly, that I really like both the setting you've created, and (most of) the new rules you've come up with. Very impressive.

I did have a few things I wanted to point out, and/or ask a few questions about.

First, I don't know if it's intentional, or if it's just not something you saw as a big deal, but by lowering the Attributes-per-NP amount the way you have, it means that anyone who tries to raise their Atts to all 5's (which, admittedly, is a bit cheesy and unnecessary for most concepts, but there are a few for which it's valid) are going to have to waste a part of a nova point to do it. It takes 21 dots above and beyond the starting amount of 7/5/3 to raise all Atts to 5. When NPs grant 3 Atts per point, it takes a straight 7 NPs, and none wasted. But 2 does not divide into 21 that way. A player will need to spend 11 NPs to get all Atts to 5, and the 11th will be partially wasted (1 of the 2 points can be used, but then all Atts are at 5, so the last Att point gained can't be spent on anything).

Now, like I say, this may have been intentional - or simply not a big deal to you - I just thought I'd point it out.

Second, I have to express some reservation about lowering the auto-sux from Mega-Strength from 5 to 3. Not because of lowering of damage capacity, but rather because the soak amounts provided by things like powers and mega-stamina are staying the same - and we're getting even more soak from our Quantum ratings. As it stands (in the canon system) it's easier to create a Tank than a Bulldozer - by which I mean that soak in Aberrant is easier to come by than high damage caps. I'm a little worried that lowering mega-strength's damage adds will leave an environment where it's very easy to create characters who are all but indestructible to anything short of a very powerful NPC. Sure, there'll still be Quantum Bolt and its still-high damage caps, but the simple fact that it costs QP for every single use (where most defensive powers are either free or very inexpensive) makes it much less effective against Tanks when compared to mega-strength.

I realize that, as it stands, non-brick characters are kind of 'crunchy' when struck by mega-strength blows and quantum blasts, but when bricks are attacking bricks, the canon system actually leaves things slightly in favor of the Defense. With mega-strength lowered my fear is that the balance will shift significantly in favor of the Defense. As an example, the only character sheet that I've attempted to whip up since seeing the creation rules you've posted so far had a permanent lethal soak rating that was in the mid-twenties, and a bashing soak that was very near thirty - and that would be before turning on the force field. If I submitted (and you approved) a character like this, my concern is that he could essentially wade through most 'standard' nova-level opponents with no real fear of injury or death. I would enjoy having created a Tank-style character that was very hard to injure, but I don't think I would enjoy it if getting into a fight presented no inherant danger for my characater at all.

Now, maybe I'm just not seeing something that you've already seen that balances all of this out, or maybe there's something in the backgrounds (like the weapon background, for instance) that makes this a non-issue, but I still wanted to point it out. Whether your ruling on mega-strength stays the way it is now or not, I'm still interested in playing, and I'm very excited about the setting!

The last thing is not a comment or critique of the new rules, but simply a question regarding resistance to poison/drugs in this setting. You seem to have stripped away most of a nova's natural resistance to such things, I was just wondering if it would still be valid to take something like Invulnerability (Poison). I'm assuming it would be fine (if a character actually felt the need to take it, anyway), but I thought I'd ask, in case it was an issue.

Finally, I'll finish up by saying that I've been very pleased with most everything else that I've seen of these new chargen rules. Nicely done, sir! ::ultracool

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